How do we unite art forms to create better theatre?

Convener(s): Heather Taylor

Participants: 10-15

Summary of discussion, conclusions and/or recommendations:

-Using different art forms have the potential to bring anything into theatre.

-favourite innovations in the last year have seen to be ones that use cross fertilization i.e. filmic, sculptural, etc.

- instead of thinking of it as bringing into theatre, should think of it as uniting art forms as separate and equal partners in the creative process.

- Some participants thought that performances/ shows are pigeon hold as are practitioners.  It’s dance or it’s theatre or it’s art – but what if it’s all of it.

- today, coming to D&D, it feels that the use of the term theatre is quite small, that theatre has certain connotations that don’t allow room for bigger thought.  Maybe this leads to practitioners of other art forms to feel uneasy, or suspicious.

-EG – Masque of the Red Death – as audience we occupy the space and allowed to discover at our own pace – given choice and not spoon fed narrative.  It’s about childhood, and secrets, and undiscovered places.

-is the fact that this weekend session is called “what are we doing about theatre” that it restricts us to specific practitioners and we would benefit from a wider range of participants.

-there is a sense of possibilities when art forms are combined as each practitioner brings their own bank of ideas.

- are we drawn to the spectacular?  Do we want an experience, participation and interaction with the production?  Do we want to have a greater affect on what we are experiencing as an audience?

-are grants/ money restricting experimentation/ risk?  Are we being restricted by the creeping administration of Arts Administration?

- still talking within traditional theatre means – set design/ lighting but perhaps we really need to take it further – sports, chefs, graffiti, etc

-Lets use this to do something that isn’t being done – why is there not enough theatricality in theatre when it is what it does best?

-theatre needs to take the rules of theatre we know and play by different rules

- We need to be aware of a new generation of thinking – it’s fast, interactive, with choice and the ability to have more than one thing happening at a time.  We need more layers of complexities.  Audience understands narrative – let them fill in the blanks, subvert what they expect and know.

- use different art forms to create new audiences – some could come for a new composition by a favorite composer, some could come for musical group, some for the contemporary dancers, and some for art created during the performance to be displayed after the show…NEED TO TRUST THE AUDIENCE WILL GET IT!

-Venues are afraid of risk – audiences are ready (look at what is popular in 2007) but the venues still worry…they are taking baby steps.

-get different people in a room and different things will happen